Order Butterflies and moths
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Pseudohemihyalea is a genus of arctiine tussock moths in the Erebidae family. While the caterpillars of most species of Pseudohemihyalea feed on broad-leaved trees (e.g. oaks, Quercus), the P. ambigua group has larvae that feed on conifers. Their forewing coloration has accordingly evolved to light-and-dark lengthwise striping, giving better camouflage among the slim needles of the host plants. In this, they seem to be convergent to certain geometer moths, such as Caripeta piniata or Sabulodes niveostriata.
The genus was long included in Hemihyalea when the latter was still unresolved versus Amastus, but seems to be distinct and in fact contain more species than originally believed. The initial confusion stems partly from the fact that Rego Barros when describing the genus set the type species to be Phaegoptera rhoda, but he had actually misidentified Pseudohemihyalea schausi specimens as P. rhoda.
The additional species were usually considered a group of the genus Aemilia, but this was long realized to be awkward and possibly wrong. Since then, a variety of data has been found to suggest the Red-banded Aemilia ("Aemilia" ambigua) and its closest relatives correctly belong in Pseudohemihyalea. However, the genus is still in need of definite revision, as at least one species is incorrectly placed here.
Species of Pseudohemihyalea include: